Travel costs put brakes on careers for Leeds workers

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Leeds has one of the most diverse employment economies in the UK but workers are still being hampered by over-priced and unnecessarily long commutes.

Unfairly high transport costs, compared to other major cities, and the lack of a ‘rapid transport system’ are also making people more reluctant to change jobs or even advance their careers, a city employment guru says.

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Craig Burton, managing director of The Works recruitment firm, told City Buzz that transport is a factor he is coming across on a day to day basis.

He said: “We know Leeds is a nice place to live and work. It also has one of the most diverse economies in the UK. We still manufacture and distribute, from chemicals to making paint brushes.

“There are so many interesting things in the City Region but the cost of travelling around the city is unfeasibly high.”

Comparing Leeds to London, he says that a ticket on the underground’s Central Line costs £3.60 but a train ticket from Manchester to Leeds - the same distance - is £21.60.

Mr Burton branded the price hike unfair and also said the price of a commute and the time it takes was having an effect on whether people changed jobs or not.

He said: “People should not have to worry about changing jobs and you should not have to move house for a new job in the north of England.”

With the daily commute for many of Leeds city workers consisting of at least three modes of transport (car to train station then walk to office) it raises questions about the city’s transport system.

He added: “We are the biggest city in Europe without a rapid transport system and that is ridiculous.”

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